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London City Airport to Enhance Passenger Experience

London City Airport, the capital’s premier business airport, has undergone significant growth in recent years, with a record 2.9 million passengers travelling through its terminal in 2007. In line with the increase in popularity and to ensure the continuation of its award-winning passenger service, London City Airport is currently undergoing substantial terminal reconfiguration and apron development.

In June 2007 the airport commenced a sizeable construction project on its east apron, investing some £30 million on new parking stands that will accommodate up to four additional aircraft. The project, due for completion in May 2008, will complement the existing 14 aircraft parking stands at London City Airport. The new stands, constructed by Carillion under the management of Atkins, comprise a 20,000 square metre concrete platform, supported by piles and built over the King George V dock to the east of the existing terminal. In addition, a sound screen is being incorporated to minimise any effect of aircraft operations on neighbouring residences. Further gate lounges will be added with access directly from the airport’s departure lounge. The completion of this project signifies the largest construction works undergone at the airport since it was originally built in 1987.

At the same time London City Airport’s departure lounge is being reconfigured to incorporate some 250 additional passenger seats, an enhanced retail offering with WH Smith and Nuance, and a new lounge featuring high-speed internet points and live sports screens.  Complimentary wireless internet access will be available for all passengers. These new airside additions to the departure lounge are due to open in early May. To complete the airside experience, the airport’s new concept bar is scheduled to open at the end of May.

Passengers arriving at the airport will also be able to check in at the newly installed SITA AirportConnect CUSS (Common User Self Service) check-in kiosks. From early May, each of the 12 kiosks will enable passengers to check themselves onto for flights with airlines including VLM, KLM and Swiss. Melanie Burnley, General Manager, Customer Services and Security, who has overseen the installation of the system at the airport, comments: “the majority of passengers at London City Airport are frequent fliers who will appreciate the timesaving that the CUSS technology offers. By speeding-up the overall time spent at the airport, business travellers are able to commute with further ease to their final destination. We are keen to continue to offer the fastest and most efficient service that passengers using London City Airport have come to expect.”

Those travelling out of London City Airport experience the shortest delays, as voted by users of ukairportdelays.co.uk, a web site set up by leading travel company Travel Counsellors.  The convenient layout of the terminal combined with the introduction of additional security lanes last year ensure that security waiting times are shorter than any other commercial airport in the United Kingdom. Inbound passengers arriving at London City Airport also benefit from convenient access to surface transport shortly after landing, with an average time of five minutes taken from the steps of the aircraft to the Docklands Light Railway platform or Taxi ranks.

London City Airport has continued to benefit from the introduction of a number of new destinations, with British Airways rolling out services to Nice, Barcelona, Warsaw and Amsterdam in 2008. A new service to Berlin-Tegel was introduced by Lufthansa in January, and its Star Alliance partners, SAS and Austrian Airlines launched routes to Oslo and Vienna last year. British Airways will also launch a business-class only service to New York on the Airbus 318, marking the first ever transatlantic scheduled service from London City Airport. Due to the airport’s configuration, the airline is able to offer a 15-minute check-in when the service commences in 2009.

Commenting on the various developments taking place at the airport site, Richard Gooding OBE, Chief Executive of London City Airport said: “Our contribution to London’s infrastructure is vital for it to maintain its role as a leading world city. The growth the airport has witnessed is largely credited to our convenient location on the doorstep of Canary Wharf and the City of London. Frequent fliers demand a premier service and our proven record of transferring passengers to their destinations with ease and speed has ensured their continued loyalty. London City Airport has grown in leaps and bounds since its opening in 1987 and the future is even more encouraging as more and more passengers travel from our East London hub.”

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Further information

For more information please contact Rupa.Haria@lcy.co.uk or Linda.Alexander@lcy.co.uk

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